Unsung Hero: Atara Grant
Alex Palmieri – News Writer
Walking to a shuttle to give their legs a break, students are joyful and happy to see Atara Grant, a SCSU shuttle driver. Grant said there are a few things in her life that brings her happiness, and one of those things is interacting with the students on a daily basis.
“I love dealing with the public, especially the youth,” said Grant. “I’ve been driving about 26 years with the public.”
Grant said even though she has drove at other schools and universities in the state, such as Yale and Sacred Heart, SCSU brings her a different type of atmosphere and she enjoys it.
“It’s quiet, it’s more laid back here,” said Grant. “The students are very nice to me and I have not had any problems with anyone here.”
Even though Grant has only been with the Southern community for two weeks, she said she enjoys every minute of it. At Southern, Grant drives students in the Wintergreen Express. This shuttle brings students from the parking lot near Wintergreen to the parking lot connecting Morrill and Engleman hall.
“I get a ‘thank you’ all the time from the students here because I am bringing them to their destination,” said Grant. “I try to be prompt; I try to be courteous and I am here to serve.”
Grant said she does not mind driving the shuttle to deliver students to their endpoints because she enjoys what she does. She added she will enjoy every moment that she has as a driver at SCSU.
“I love it,” said Grant. “I love the atmosphere. My favorite part of the job is the interaction.”
There are a lot of exciting and interesting people Grant said she has met in the short time being at SCSU. Grant’s mission at SCSU will be short lived because she is filling in for one of the other drivers. Though this is the case, Grant said she will try to impact students as much as she can. She said she learned a lot from the students and she will miss the students when she leaves in a week. Grant added if she ever had the opportunity to come back, she would.
“Yes, most definitely yes I would come back,” said Grant.
When students get onto the shuttle, Grant attempts to help them if they are having a difficult time. If students are worried about a test, she said she will try to calm them down and prepare them for a certain assignment or test they are going to take. If students are worried they will fail, Grant said she is there for moral support.
“If students get on here and they talk about taking a test, and they’re worried if they’re going to pass or not,” said Grant, “then I try to encourage them to do their best and focus on one area and do the best you can; try to apply yourself.”
Photo Credit: Alex Palmieri – News Writer